The Reaction by Helena Coggan ~Goodreads~
Published by Hodder & Stoughton 2016
Hardback edition 432 pages ~Book Depository~
Thank you to the publisher for sending me this brilliant book for an honest review.
For the first time in her life, fifteen-year-old Rose Elmsworth is alone. Her father, David, has been imprisoned and disgraced, a death sentence almost certain. She has been rejected by the Department, the amoral law-enforcement agency in which she grew up. Most dangerous of all is the terrible secret she and her father have been keeping all her life: if exposed, it has the power to destroy her. But Rose cannot stay hidden forever. Around her, the world is changing faster than either she or the Department can stop it. The laws which have for years maintained peace between magicals and non-magicals are breaking down, and two rival militias are gathering on the streets to prepare for a devastating war. As deeper, darker elements of her father’s past emerge, Rose begins to understand that the rules of good and evil in which she has always believed will not protect her anymore. In a world of monsters, how long can trust, loyalty and justice survive? And how much will Rose herself have to change to stay alive?
From picking up The Catalyst at the beginning of 2015, I was so excited to pick up this sequel. Helena Coggan has such a way with words and is a brilliant storyteller who keeps me on the edge of my seat, and The Reaction is certainly no exception. The Reaction is written from two perspectives, Rose and her adoptive father David. At the end of The Catalyst the cliffhanger kind of loomed around David and whether he is who he says he is, and throughout this book we discover David’s past and a lot of revelations that change both his and Rose’s lives forever. I was right at the end of The Catalyst to be aware of David, because the plot is mainly about him and his past and the decisions he made. Secrets are spilled, and Rose is desperately trying to get her life together after David’s arrest and being rejected by The Department because she’s “different.”
Rose develops hugely as a character from the first book, and she has to because she’s on her own. However, I am more fascinated with the characters David and Loren in this book as they’re very complex and I feel that we’re never going to really understand them fully and I’m perfectly okay with that. I like the mystery in characters and Helena Coggan has hit the nail on the head with these two. There are some elements of romance in this story but its just the right amount that doesn’t get in the way of the plot, and isn’t awfully cliche so yay!
Again, Coggan has hit us with another bomb of a cliffhanger and I’m excited and annoyed that I have another wait before I can find out what happens with David and Rose. The war between magicals and non-magicals is looming and the suspense is absolutely killing me, and I am blown away by how amazing Helena Coggan’s writing is and this story keeps getting better and better. Roll on book number three!